The Def Guide to Zzap!64

The Zzap Rrap

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 26, 2003 3:21 pm 
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Techno Teaboy

Joined: Tue Aug 26, 2003 3:12 pm
Posts: 9
Here's a memory..

We were an impoverished family and I thought I would never own a computer :-( Wanted a C64 for a g e s, ever since defeating my best friend at cheese /ret race on the vic20)

But one year, me mum saved and got me a combined chrimbo / birthday present of a commodore 64!!! YEY!! We bought it from boots with 3-4 games and a neos mouse. I walked it home from town the happiest 13yr old in the world.

Shame that it wouldnt power up. Just got a black screen. I cried my eyes out. We took it back to boots where the nice lady tried changing the plug a few times, until trying a different power block. Long walk home again.. but worth it! Those first games - played them to death!

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JSR $2020
JSR $2020
JSR $2020
JSR $2020
JSR $2020
JSR $2020
...


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 26, 2003 3:47 pm 
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ThrustLevel10 wrote:
JSR $2020
JSR $2020
JSR $2020
JSR $2020
JSR $2020
JSR $2020

welcome thrust, but whats with the subroutine signature, not some feeble attempt at hacking is it? if so, whatever it is that lies in address $2020, you forgot to JMP back to the start to continue the loop :twisted:
anyway, i remember when and how i got my c64, but it's one of my better memories, so this is the wrong category for it.
regards, baz


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 Post subject: Damn power blocks
PostPosted: Tue Aug 26, 2003 11:56 pm 
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Techno Teaboy
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ThrustLevel10 wrote:
Shame that it wouldnt power up. Just got a black screen. I cried my eyes out. We took it back to boots where the nice lady tried changing the plug a few times, until trying a different power block. Long walk home again.. but worth it! Those first games - played them to death!


Those damn power blocks! I had to live without my 64 for several months in '87 while my dad kept telling me " a guy I know'll fix it for free":shock:

The most frustrating thing was that it would sometimes work - it'd load up a game and play for hours, then die (to a black screen) not to work again for weeks.
I spent hours trying to get the bugger to work, often getting a couple of mins into a tape before it blanked, power light still on.
Why did they have to glue the power supplies shut?
I guess it was just a single line that failed on the psu, but being young I thought it was some kinda voodoo - hmm, is it trying to tell me what to play? When the psu was replaced I was so happy, it was like having an arm reattached! :D

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 27, 2003 1:06 am 
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Techno Teaboy

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Yeah those power blocks were a real pain. I recall the replacement going a year later too. You couldnt open the blocks up to jinky about inside. Im not sure they were glued, I think the black ones had been completely submerged in some tough plastic coating, i mean they were

--- S O L I D!! ---

oh and Baz..

JSR$2020 explained..

#32 (decimal number 32) in hexadecimal is $#20
the ascii code for a blank space character is 32
the hexadecimal machine code instruction in 6502/6510 of "jump to a subroutine at the address specified in the following two bytes.." is #32.
(the answer to life the universe and everything is #42)
if you tried to hack or disassemble a chunk of c64 memory, you would often come across big wedges of $#32's (used as "black" in graphics or spaces in text). The dissesembler would understand it to be, therefore JSR$2020, JSR$2020, JSR$2020, etc. My signature is basically just empty space! (I obviously have nothing of value to say!!)

P.S. JMP??!!! what?!!! now thats a naughty naughty way to program.. tut tut.

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JSR $2020
JSR $2020
JSR $2020
JSR $2020
JSR $2020
JSR $2020
...


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 27, 2003 3:18 am 
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lol good one. being a douglas adams fan myself as well, i feel so completely brainwhipped now.
i've also been away from the c64 scene far too long,
baz


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 31, 2003 12:14 pm 
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Techno Teaboy

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We got our 64 from Comet in about 1984. It had a 5 year extended warranty but it was crap. Whenever it broke down they had to send it back to America to be fixed, which took about 6 weeks. Once the sound went (dead SID chip presumably) and also the TV output somehow came loose so the cable wouldn't stay in it. After a long wait it came back and they'd only fixed the TV out - still no sound, so it had to go straight back again. AARRRGGGHHH!!!!

Another annoying thing was that Dropzone would ALWAYS crash after 2 or 3 goes. It wasn't even a cracked version and it worked fine on my best mate's 64.


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 31, 2003 9:27 pm 
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They had extended warrenties back then too?

Looks like they were as "good" as they are now. And their service is still A1 too! ;-) (worked at Comet for 10 months a while back!)


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2003 11:00 pm 
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Techno Teaboy

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Location: London
alexhighnumber wrote:
There was a small highstreet chain/mail order firm called Castle Computers based near me that wound up - although that was the early nineties Amiga Days so maybe too late?


This is off topic, but in 1994 or so I ordered an Amiga 1200 - forgot the company - via cheque, 5 weeks past and nowt so rang them......they kept saying "Currently out of stock". wtf.... It turns out that the company was working with another to rip people off. So, bye bye company.

I never ever heard or get my money back......I bought a 2nd-hand one in the end...... With a 250mb hdd, 10mb ram...... God those were the days lol

Before that, I had a C64, C128, C64, C64C, A500+....... I got rid of them sadly, wished I never :(


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2003 11:03 pm 
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Techno Teaboy

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ThrustLevel10 wrote:
Here's a memory..
Shame that it wouldnt power up. Just got a black screen. I cried my eyes out. We took it back to boots where the nice lady tried changing the plug a few times, until trying a different power block. Long walk home again.. but worth it! Those first games - played them to death!


Those BLOCK PSU's werent very durable were they.... I got thru 4 in 5 years lol


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2003 11:55 pm 
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Techno Teaboy

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no they really were rubbish. Just about everyone I can think of who had a 64 had to replace a power block, and I think they cost about £30 (and a pound was a pound in the 80's!)

Perhaps its because everyone mostly left the blocks plugged in and therefore on (as the power on/pff switch was on the c64) so the blocks were "transforming" 24/7..

..or maybe they were just crap.

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JSR $2020
JSR $2020
JSR $2020
JSR $2020
JSR $2020
JSR $2020
...


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2003 11:53 am 
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Techno Teaboy

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Strangely enough I seem to remember that the power block was one of the few parts of my 64 that never gave me any trouble. But then my dad was very pedantic about turning things off at the wall...

With the help of many long winded repairs (see above post) my 64 limped on until late 1991, when a failed chip finally did for it (I think they said it was the SIMONS chip or something like that). It was out of warranty by then and it would have cost £45 to repair it so I sold it for £15 instead. I didn't mind too much by then as I knew I was getting an Amiga for Christmas.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2003 4:28 am 
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Colour and shape seems to be a good way of identifying the power supplies. Some were wedge-shaped, others block shaped. Some were light coloured, others dark coloured.

As far as I know, the wedge - shaped ones were more reliable than the blocks.

In my experience, anyway.

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2003 10:47 pm 
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The wedge also has an easy to remove fuse just in case it blows (which it has done once in its 20 year usage)...

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2003 11:30 am 
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Taking my beloved old-skool "hardcore" brown c64 to Dixons for repair which they didn't fix for two months, then hearing that they "lost it", offering to replace it with the newer grey one with the sound chip that couldn't do samples properly :(

I guess it was their revenge for all the times i had hijacked their machines with

10 PRINT "DIXONS IS CRAP"
20 GOTO 10

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2003 10:58 am 
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Jianso wrote:
Colour and shape seems to be a good way of identifying the power supplies. Some were wedge-shaped, others block shaped. Some were light coloured, others dark coloured.

As far as I know, the wedge - shaped ones were more reliable than the blocks.

In my experience, anyway.


Bricks and Cheese Blocks I used to think of them as :) I got through several and ended up with a much more rugged and everlasting third party one (sorry can't recall the brand and the label fell off many years ago)

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